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Posts with tag bloodelves

Killing off the Horde and their heroes

Ketsumei of Bleeding Hollow makes a pretty good point on the forums: we're killing off Horde heroes, and Alliance are getting a pass. Actually, the Horde heroes point isn't quite a valid one-- yes, we've taken down Kael'thas, Rend Blackhand, and eventually Zul'jin, but we've also killed off Emperor Thaurissian, the Architect of Stormwind (many, many times), and Mekgineer Thermaplugg, not to mention that eventually we'll be killing the number one figure in Alliance lore, Arthas himself. Oh, and some lady named Katrana Prestor, usually found sitting on the left hand of the throne in Stormwind, has been killed as well. But it's true that more instances, especially raid instances, are featuring the deaths of Horde races rather than Alliance races. Especially in the endgame, we're fighting Trolls, Orcs and Blood Elves, not Humans and Draenei.

So what's with the imbalance? This Horde-heavy enemies list is actually a very recent thing-- Scarlet Monastery is full of Humans, as are the Deadmines, and BRD is full of Dwarves. But as we've headed to Outland, the Burning Legion seems to have a thing for recruiting Blood Elves and Orcs, and Zul'Aman will bring about the death of many, many Trolls. Far many more Horde cries of death are being heard lately, and that's just racist.

There's only one thing for it-- as players suggest, we should be allowed to kill a corrupted Malfurion Stormrage in the Emerald Dream expansion. No arguing now-- let's say he's gone insane from fighting the Nightmare and he's got to be put down. We need an instance full of Night Elves to kill over and over again. Oh, and while we're at it, let's have Arthas bring Uther back as a Scourge, and kill him, too! And what's the King of Stormwind up to-- isn't time he died, too?

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Humor, Raiding, Lore, Bosses, NPCs

The Light and How to Swing It: The great divide

Once upon a time, there was a class called the paladin. Paladins were mostly humans, with a couple of dwarves thrown in for good measure. They could heal or do damage depending on what gear they wore (effective paladin tanking was a long way away.) They fought their way through the nerfs and the buffs, raiding from UBRS to Naxx, PVPing in battlegrounds and Hillsbrad, but through it all, they always had two things in common: hatred of the Horde and reverence for the Light.

Then, one winter, some new long-eared paladins began showing up. Their women were skinny, their men had funny hair, and they seemed to jump an awful lot. What's worse, they worked for the filthy Horde, and instead of revering the Light, they twisted its power for their own dark ends.

Soon, many of new paladins began showing up on the paladin forums with a mindset that was radical to the old pallies. They hadn't become paladins to swing hammers like Uther, the new pallies said. Instead, they had watched how paladins worked for Alliance for two years, and had rolled them for their strong healing power and nascent tanking ability. They called the old, damage-dealing paladins "retnoobs" and "retardins." The Alliance paladins grew to hate the young, know-it-all upstarts, while the Horde paladins considered their compatriots hopelessly stuck in what they WANTED paladins to be, rather than what they were. And there we have things today.

But it's the same class, right? Is there really that big a difference between blood elf paladins and Alliance paladins? Why all the fighting? I can think of a few reasons.

Read more →

Filed under: Paladin, (Paladin) The Light and How to Swing It

WoW Moviewatch: So that's where that dance came from!

We've all seen the videos of different dances. We've had ones where they all dance together, ones where the original source is cited. We've even seen video of a guy dancing like a Night Elf Female. Now we have another dance movie. There's one thing about this one that sets it apart, however. This is the first one I've seen that does a really good job of putting the dances side-by-side with their inspirations.

As Bowzerblack on the WoW LJ said: "I didn't know that about ogres!" All I can say is that I didn't either. And yes, I know it's the Boomkin dance too, but you don't see a lot of (completely-bare) topless Boomkins running about. Which, now that I think about it, is probably a good thing.

Previously, on MovieWatch...

[via the WoW LJ community]

Filed under: Machinima, Humor, WoW Moviewatch

Then and Now: Pretty addicts & space squids

[This one won't win any beauty contests with that face, that's for sure...]
Flash back to six months ago. There were people swearing up and down that the Blood Elves would ruin the Horde with their silly antics and their overly-pretty looks. Many on the Horde side had misgivings that we'd be dealing with a slew of switchers who were just rolling Horde to play pretty characters, but otherwise would bring little to the table. I remember seeing forum postings saying that Blood Elves would be outcast and unwelcome, and even a couple of "boycotts." Many other people were complaining about the "space shaman" that the Alliance were getting. Well, okay, most of the complaints were about the male models -- I don't think anyone on the Alliance side disliked the female Draenei models. Then of course, there were those who were just as unhappy with the changes to the Blood Elf models made towards the tail end of the open beta and swore they wouldn't roll one due to the larger chest.

Flash forward to now. My guild has one Blood Elf paladin who is approaching endgame: an old guild mate who re-rolled. We also have a host of Blood Elf alts in various stages of being run up through the ranks. None of us are even batting an eyelash at any of them. There again, none of these are new players to the guild, so we aren't dealing with any potential switchers. Another of my guild mates is doing the faction grind to get her undead a chocobo... err... thunder chicken... whatever those things are. The forums are no longer ablaze with "Blood Elves suck!" or "Just say no to space squid!"

I know for me, despite misgivings, the Blood Elves have largely been a blip on my personal radar. I have a Blood Elf hunter (stereotypical, had to do it) who is all of level 19, and has been collecting dust for some time now. I saw the content and experienced most of the new quests, which was pretty much what I set out to do. None of it has made me want to level a Blood Elf to endgame to take the place of my Troll/Tauren/Undead characters. And that's even including the Blood Elves having some extremely awesome racials that I'm sure will eventually make me level one.

Have the Draenei or Blood Elves totally changed your gaming landscape? Have you noticed a lot of faction switching, or did you switch to the other side yourself? Did people really boycott, or were prejudices eventually left behind? For those of you who rerolled or switched, have you been treated any differently?

Just curious, since there was so much fire and vitriol about the new races before Burning Crusade went live.

[many thanks to Sean]

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends

A look at Blizzard's stats, post-Burning Crusade

Last November, Blizzard finally made public a page full of stats for what's happening to all of us in game-- the most dangerous creatures, most gathered items, most completed quests, and so on. Ever since, I always find it fascinating to stop over there and see what's new, but today I realized that I haven't really seen it since Burning Crusade dropped. So let's take a look at what players are up to since the Dark Portal opened, shall we?

Netherweave has jumped right to the top of listings in the Auction House, while Arcade Dust makes a nice showing at 7th. Of the Primal elements, only Earth is on the first page (most likely because it's the most farmed from all those Earth Elementals in Nagrand). It also comes from Mining, so it makes a good showing on the Most Gathered Items as well-- Copper leads that category by double everything else, though, most likely because of all the jewelcrafting going on. In fact, while Soul Shards are still number one, Copper Bars are the second Most Created Items in the realms, too. Interesting that you have to go to page 3 before you see a jewelcrafting item, though-- two sets of battleground tokens (Arathi Basin and WSG) are being made more than any Delicate Copper Wire.

Warlock pets remain on the top of the Most Dangerous NPC list, but King Bangalash and those nasty Defias Pillagers have company-- apparently people are back playing their mains, and raid bosses like Shade of Aran, Gruul, Nightbane, and the Maiden are killing players by the thousands. The Most Complete Quests screen has interesting info, too-- almost all of the quests are newbie Blood Elf quests (there is at least one Draenei newbie quest mixed in, but BEs have the clear majority). You'd think people would be completing quests in Outland to level, but three months after BC release, maybe that's not the case anymore. According to the stats, it seems like the large majority of players has gotten their mains to 70, are raiding Kara and Gruul, and leveling up their Blood Elf mains.

Filed under: Items, Analysis / Opinion, Odds and ends, Quests, The Burning Crusade, NPCs

Flash heals for everyone

Mystic Worlds (who just changed the color scheme on her blog) has an interesting idea: give every single class in the game the chance to have a flash heal all for themselves.

To a certain extent, things already seem to be going in that direction-- the Gift of the Naaru is pretty much exactly what she's talking about, except that it's only for Draenei. And Blood Elves, with Mana Tap and Arcane Torrent, have what you might call a "flash mana heal." Additionally, lots of high end gear is showing up with a chance to heal on it-- there's even an enchant now that periodically heals the whole party. Mobs are hitting harder than ever, but there's also more ways to recover from it.

But MW wants a "heal yourself, nub" heal-- for rogues or casters who don't manage aggro, or warriors who don't wait for mana. That idea I'm not thrilled about-- one way to "train" a caster not to pull aggro is to simply let them die. If we gave casters all kinds of outs, there's lowered incentive for them to do their job right in the first place. Of course, MW does say that each class would be required to spec a certain way for the heal, so it wouldn't exactly be free-- players who could play their class right could spec a different way and take the bonuses that came along with it, and players who wanted things to be a little easier could spec for the flash heal.

Then again, by the end of MW's piece, you can tell she's just ranting about being told to heal. That I can identify with-- if I'm main healing an instance, you don't have to tell me to heal you. If I'm supposed to heal you, and I can heal you, I'm healing you. Whether every class has a flash heal or not, if you're not the warrior and we're all doing things right, you probably shouldn't be getting hit in the first place.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Instances, Buffs, Enchants

Know Your Lore: Kael'thas Sunstrider

The second fellow in this week's Know Your Lore is one of the most influential figures in the Burning Crusade expansion. An entire zone, Netherstorm, is twisted around his plans and his personality. The blood elves practically worship him as a god and the draenei see him as their most bitter foe. And yet, no one knows quite what he's up to in his suspiciously pink floating ship. So quick, before someone kills him, meet ...

Who: Prince Kael'thas Sunstrider.

What: Blood elf. Yes! Finally! Someone who has stayed one race without being turned into a fish/corrupted by demons/etc.!

History: Kael'thas Sunstrider is the last of a dynasty of high elf kings that date back to Dath'Remar Sunstrider, the old leader of the Highborne. As a young man, he studied magic in Dalaran and became an accomplished mage. While in Dalaran, he met a human mage named Jaina Proudmoore and fell for her, even though she was a teenager and he was an ... immortal-type guy, so probably pretty old. But she decided that her studies were more important, and didn't respond when he courted her. Then Jaina started seeing Prince Arthas, and Kael'thas was devastated. Wow, Jaina kind of got around. I guess that's what comes from being one of the few female characters in an RPG. She's single now, though, unless you believe those rumors about her and Thrall.

Anyway, Kael was studying in Dalaran when Arthas went nutzo. Arthas marched his army of undead into Quel'Thalas and defiled the Sunwell, killing many blood elves and sickening more. Kael's father was among the dead. He hastened back to Quel'Thalas from Dalaran and took command of the remaining high elves. The bitter Kael renamed them the Sin'dorei, or blood elves, in honor of the dead. He and his troops joined the Alliance to fight against the Scourge.

Read more →

Filed under: Features, The Burning Crusade, Lore, Know your Lore, NPCs

Is M'uru faking it?

We've already wondered if the Draenei are too good for their own good, and now there's a theory floating around about the other faction's new race: it could be that the Blood Elves are being fooled.

Inside their capital city of Silvermoon, in the Court of the Sun, you can find a Naaru (ethereal being of Light, there's lots of them in Shattrath, too) being held captive by the Blood Elves. This is how they're using the Light (to become Paladins and generally wreck havoc with Warcraft's lore) for their own purposes, by holding the Naaru named M'uru captive and draining his power.

But Naaru are pretty darned powerful (even Khadgar, if you talk to him, sounds impressed with what they've got), and so a few players, Arlia of Bloodscalp included, hypothesize that M'uru might not be completely on the level about being "captured." Maybe he's just playing possum-- though for what purpose we're not sure. It could be to study the Blood Elves, or to bring them to the Light eventually. Or there's the possibility that "M'uru" is not a Naaru at all, and the Blood Elves don't have exactly what they think they have.

Though it's true we can't know for sure from the lore available now, a few players say that what we see is real: the Blood Elves used to be the High Elves, and are just "magic badasses," capable of draining whoever they want, especially a magical form like the Naaru. But it would be very interesting if this Blood Elf-Naaru relationship was not what it seems.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Blood Elves, Lore, NPCs

Secrets of the Burning Crusade minisite

Blizzard has posted a brand new Burning Crusade mini site, and it's pretty spiffy. After a quick intro (how can I have missed that the Blood Elf mount is now called the "Hawkstrider"? What was wrong with the other name, Co-- ohhh, I see.), the music starts and you can enter the lush world of... a flash website.

There's not much news in it, if you've been paying attention to BC previews at all. It runs you quickly through all the new content-- flying mounts, the new jewelcrafting profession, the new races, Arena PVP, and the new world of Outland, and even has a few good writeups of the different dungeons and factions you'll see in Outland. Overall, nothing really new, but there's good music throughout, and it's easy to check out. If you're already excited for BC (and how could you not be?), this will only add to the trembling in expectation.

Oh, almost forgot-- there's a secret minigame hidden among all the content. Poke around, if you like-- Blizzard has hidden some secret clicks in there that allow you to eventually access top secret content. It's not hard to figure out, but if you really don't want to bother with it, we'll even provide you with a walkthrough after the jump.

Read more →

Filed under: How-tos, Fan stuff, Odds and ends, Blizzard, Expansions, The Burning Crusade

Breakfast Topic: When discrimination rears its ugly head

I play a Shaman as my main, and I've said it more than once to my guild already: as much as I can, I will outright refuse to group with Paladins in the Burning Crusade. I don't care if they are on our side, if they do bring that sweet, sweet Judgement of Wisdom, and if they are really corrupting the light-- a Pally is a Pally. They're my sworn enemy, and that means they have to die (as soon as that shield fades, anyway).

And I'm not alone-- Jingle refuses Blood Elves in general on behalf of the entire Horde. And interfaction discrimination doesn't have to wait until the Burning Crusade-- Julious points out that Gnomes seem to get no respect at all, even from Alliance. Hey, I respect Gnomes plenty. I respect them at dinnertime with a fine Durotar wine, usually after they've been grilled or charbroiled.

So where do you land on all of this? Can't stand the sight of some of your supposed allies (I'll just assume you already hate the other faction), or do you think we should all just get along?

Filed under: Horde, Alliance, Gnomes, Paladin, Analysis / Opinion, Blood Elves, Features

The Burning Crusade -- you vs. your guild

New races, new (to your chosen faction) classes, 10 more levels. That's the short-form of what The Burning Crusade is going to deliver to us, come January 16th. Many guilds are focusing on the push to 70 and refining strategies for 25-man raiding. Many players are understandably eager to try out the new races and classes available to their chosen faction. Can these two goals mesh, or are we going to see a shift in the player-guild dynamic?

My earliest guild wasn't started to beat endgame content. It was there for a group of people who enjoyed playing in each other's company and so that these people would have an easily accessible pool of resources for leveling and grinding up to 60. When we hit 60, the usual drama set in, as not everyone hit the level cap at the same time. Some people got bored or frustrated with the lack of progression at 60 and went off to look for raiding guilds. Others were happy just hanging out with friends, and still others were a bit upset that they were left behind and were feeling pressured to level to 60 so the guild could progress together.

Now that the expansion is going to be upon us, I see the potential for the same type of splits amongst guild memberships. Some are going to want to power level to 70 to get back on the raiding wagon, while others will start fresh new characters that they hope to one day get to level 70. Then there are those people who want to savor the new content and while do a bit of leveling and a bit of playing around with the new low-level content.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, Guilds, Expansions, Raiding

Adventures in Beta: Blood Elf Paladin, Level 1-5

Having successfully leveling my draenei shaman to 6 without breaking the beta, I decided to skip over to the other server and check out how my beloved Horde are handling their new blood elf pals. Since I had made a draenei shaman, I decided on a horde paladin -- though not without trepidation, because I might want to play one in live someday. Unfortunately, most of the blood elf faces and hairstyles scream "I would have made fun of you for playing World of Warcraft in high school!" I finally made a kind-faced, black-haired paladin and entered the new starting area.

It was just as I feared. Although the blood elf area was beautiful, it was also filled with dancing, flirting Paris Hilton clones. It struck me that unlike the draenei, the blood elves were clearly a well-organized society. Their area is clean and beautiful, and whereas with the draenei you're a survivor and one of the few that can save the race, with the blood elves, you're ... just another blood elf.

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Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, How-tos, Walkthroughs, Expansions, Features, Screenshots, The Burning Crusade

More like Out-of-reachland

Outland might not actually be reachable yet (it won't be until the expansion is released in January), but already it's popping up all over Azeroth.
  • Draenei have shown up all over the land, some with extra quests (for Erodar faction). Blood elves already appeared in the game in a few places, and they're now the new models-- Draenei in Swamp of Sorrows have been updated too (although The Broken Ones have stayed the same).
  • In addition, Shaman and Pally trainers have appeared in and around the main cities.
  • Darkshore is running a new boat to nowhere (yet).
  • Outland has shown up on the new ingame World Map.
  • Dungeons can be flipped to epic mode (by right clicking on the player portrait), but it doesn't work on any of the current dungeons.
  • Jewelcrafting recipes and components have appeared at vendors.
  • And finally, the character creation screen, in case you haven't visited it lately, shows two grayed out options for the new races.
So close! Yet it's all still out of reach. We won't be able to play with any of this stuff until the Burning Crusade is upon us. Oh, Blizz, why dost thou taunt us so?

Filed under: Paladin, Shaman, Items, Blizzard, Instances, Expansions, Draenei, Blood Elves

Players: Bring skinny Blood Elves back!

Wow. If you think delaying your upcoming expansion will raise the hackles of players, just try pumping up (Hans and Frans style-- wait, is that reference too old by now?) your character models. Players haven't taken very kindly to the changes in the beta build-- Blizz bulked up the Blood Elves, and players who wanted skinny magic users have cried foul.

For the best writeup on the story I've seen, head over to the newly created Livejournal community (here's their manifesto). If you agree with the plight of players who want emaciated magic addicts, feel free to sign the petition and become a Member of the Skinny Blood Elves Society (clocking in at 82 signatures at the time of posting). And dreamt over on LJ has an update on the subject, including rumors (unfounded, but still) that the bulking up of the Blood Elves won't stop at the pixels-- Blizzard might change the Napoleon dance, the twirly jump, even the voice acting. I think those rumors are unfounded at best, but this is beta, so everything's up in the air at the moment.

Neth has given us a blue post on the subject as well, and she says (not surprisingly) that Blizzard's only goal is to make sure the models fit in the world they've designed. However, right before that, she does say that the change was made "in response to concerns that the Blood Elf male appeared to be too feminine." So the devs gave them "a more substantial, masculine feel" to give "the impression of strength and a menacing presence." Draw your own gender-based conclusions about that-- I'm not quite sure "substance" necessarily means "masculinity," but apparently Blizzard thinks so.

And Ephraim, the player who original brought the change to the forums, has posted comparisons to other races (including the one above) that make the change look not as pronounced as it originally was. There's no question that players don't want gorilla-shaped Blood Elves-- it doesn't fit what we've been told about the race or the lore behind it (not to mention that, Pally excluded, the Blood Elves' lore sends them towards the less melee-inclined races anyway). But the question that remains is what Blizzard will do with that information. We'll keep you updated on any changes we see coming out of the beta-- hopefully by the time it hits shelves, Blizz and the players will have found a BE shape that they can both agree on.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Blizzard, Expansions, Blood Elves

Blizz bulks up beta build Blood Elves

When the Blood Elves were first released, it was pretty clear that Blizzard was trying to give the Horde a "pretty" race. Not that they need it (Horde FTW), but one reason for the imbalances on some servers between Horde and Alliance populations is the lack of a race on Horde side that can not only kill stuff fast, but look good doing it. Yes, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but it's true that the Blood Elves were the first Horde race to, err, look a little less than rugged. I wouldn't say this myself, but some fans even called the coming of the Blood Elves "the Flaming Crusade."

Blizzard has apparently put a stop to that. In the latest build of the beta, which WoW Guru says is Build 5866, the Blood Elves have been bulked up (males are the only shots we have, but the difference is clear). The males are no longer wiry ballet dancers-- they're not quite as bulky as, say, Orcs, but they've got a little more heft to them.

Of course, given the "beholder" thing, fans are split (aren't they always?). A large number of players aren't real thrilled with the loss of the leaner, meaner Blood Elves-- not only did the thinner frame give them more of the "evil magic" look (I'm sure the voiceovers helped with this as well), but apparently some female players think the bulky Blood Elves look less--let me make sure I get this right-- "sexy." Some ladies even say the change represents a lack of female artists in the Blizzard ranks.

Now, it is important to remember that the Burning Crusade is still changing, so this might not be the final form of the Belfs. But they sure do look... different. I'll leave it up to you: good different or bad different? Two more comparison shots, courtesy of Ephraim on the forums, after the jump.

Read more →

Filed under: Virtual selves, Blizzard, News items, Expansions, Blood Elves

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